Montevallo Earns Wachovia Foundation Creative Connection Education Award

HILTON HEAD, S.C. – The University of Montevallo athletic department was selected as one of two winners of the inaugural Wachovia Foundation Creative Connection Education Award at the Peach Belt Conference annual meetings in Hilton Head. The Falcons participated in the Wachovia Foundation Positive Benefits for Children (PBC) Program and held an event with Montevallo Elementary School earlier this spring.

The award honors those institutions and student-athletes who have demonstrated unique ways to make a positive impact on elementary and middle school students. The award provides a monetary incentive to help continue efforts in providing positive experiences to students in the middle/elementary school. It is the hope that through the education program youth students will gain inspiration from collegiate student-athletes that they can achieve their dreams through education.

The University of Montevallo invited 100 fifth graders from Montevallo Elementary School to campus this past April for a day-long presentation designed to encourage the kids to attend college. After a program by UM student-athletes and administrators, the children were broken into groups that rotated between stations that involved a tennis clinic, a baseball/kickball station, a soccer and speed-agility session and skill clinics in volleyball and basketball.  That was followed by a pizza picnic for all students. The program was coordinated by the Montevallo Connection, a program to re-energize and strengthen the partnership between the University of Montevallo faculty and the faculty in Montevallo schools. The Montevallo Connection is dedicated to cultural, educational, athletic and professional exchanges that will enhance the educational experiences of both UM students and students in Montevallo public schools.

UNC Pembroke was the only other Peach Belt Conference school to be given the award for their efforts with their local Kiwanis Club.

The purpose of the Wachovia Foundation PBC (Positive Benefits for Children) Education Program is for PBC institutions to work with local public middle/elementary schools in their respective communities to model the Wachovia Foundation’s philosophy of eliminating achievement gaps through programs of reading in public schools. The program is structured where institutions and/or individual teams are targeted to identify one creative avenue to inspire middle/elementary school age individuals in their communities and show them the benefits and opportunities available through education.  Each PBC institution receives a monetary stipend from the grant provided by the Wachovia Foundation to use during the academic year to assist with funding the PBC Education Program.

For more information on the program Montevallo held for the local fifth graders click here.